Monday, February 12, 2007


Twas after supper one night in February, the snow flurries were slowly building mountains of snow outside as the wind howled its protest for all to hear. Grandma was in her rockin chair putting the finishing touches on the quilt she had been spending the long wintry nights working on. Grandpa was in his old comfy chair that all knew only he was allowed to sit in reading the evening news paper. I was lying on the floor near the warmth of the glow of the fireplace reading one of my comic books when both grandma and I heard one of grandpa's familar grumblings.

"Has our educational system gotten so bad that there isn't anyone in government these days that has studied history or is it they just do not understand the consequences of going to war and losing it?" Then he went quiet as if he was waiting for something.

Both grandma and I looked at each other, winked, then smiling, she nodded her head to me as if to say, "it is your turn." I smiled back at her and without taking my eyes off of her I said; "ok grandpa, who rattled your shackles now?" Feeling proud of myself for doing my duty in this situation I was surprised by grandpa's next words. The harshness of the tone of his voice went through me like the dullest of knives through melting butter.

"Boy, it is not who but what. You do not attack people for their foolish ideas. You attack the ideas of fools. To attack the person is to acknowlege you have no counter arguement to their ideas and you end up being seen as the fool. It is far better to be silent thus thought a fool then to open your mouth and reveal yourself as one. Knowledge is ever plentiful but wisdom is always in the shortest of supply." With that said he went silent again.

After a few minutes of silence grandpa had this to say;

"boy, good leaders are hard to come by but followers are plenty. It is the nature of any society. A good leader does not change his mind unless he hears of a better plan to achieve the same goal. A follower may complain but unless he can come up with a better plan he remains a follower and never a leader. A leader knows that he can never be misled, he can only mislead. Tis the follower that can declare he was misled for he is not a leader of men. A leader must be confident in himself. A follower finds his confidence in others. And it is in the time of war, my boy, where the leaders separate themselves from the followers. For it is the leaders that lead a nation down the path of victory. For it is the leader who will not acknowlege defeat until he sees his troops defeated."


Tom said...

Excellent observations from your Grandfather! Wish there were more of him around.

dcat said...

I agree it's the way I was raised but did I listen to all of it? Still wondering? :D

dcat said...

Um this is to the death!


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